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Journey to Arezzo

Nicholas Penny: The Apotheosis of Piero, 17 April 2003

Piero della Francesca 
by Roberto Longhi, translated by David Tabbat.
Sheep Meadow, 364 pp., £32.50, September 2002, 1 878818 77 5
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... his Duchess are rhymed with the distant rocks and water in the territories over which they rule. Roberto Longhi’s brilliant book on Piero della Francesca, first published in 1927, is perhaps the first and certainly the fullest account of the artist to emerge from the cult of Post-Impressionism. The book was soon translated and immediately ...

At the Royal Academy

Charles Hope: Giorgione, 31 March 2016

... first attributed to Giorgione by the most influential Italian art historian of the last century, Roberto Longhi. In 1992 a letter about the picture Longhi wrote to the owner in 1944 was published in an exhibition catalogue. This was unexpected, because it had long been accepted that when art historians provided ...

A Double Destiny

Susan Sontag: Artemisia Gentileschi, and Anna Banti, 25 September 2003

... for her husband, Italy’s pre-eminent 20th-century critic, art historian and cultural arbiter, Roberto Longhi (1890-1970). It was Longhi who, among his many potent reassessments, launched the modern rediscovery of the Gentileschis, father and daughter, as important painters, in an article published in 1916. Banti ...

Venus in Blue Jeans

Charles Nicholl: The Mona Lisa, 4 April 2002

Mona Lisa: The History of the World’s Most Famous Painting 
by Donald Sassoon.
HarperCollins, 350 pp., £16.99, September 2001, 0 00 710614 9
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... at the insipid smile of that prim and sex-starved young woman’. Iconoclastic young critics like Roberto Longhi poured scorn on the painting, and even Bernard Berenson – though hardly daring to question ‘a shaman so potent’ as Pater – confessed to his covert dislike of this revered work: ‘she had simply become an incubus.’ When T. S. Eliot ...

Models and Props

Nicholas Penny: Caravaggio in the Studio, 10 August 2000

Caravaggio 
by Catherine Puglisi.
Phaidon, 448 pp., £24.95, May 2000, 0 7148 3966 3
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Caravaggio’s Secrets 
by Leo Bersani and Ulysse Dutoit.
MIT, 118 pp., £18.50, September 1998, 0 262 02449 7
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by Peter Robb.
Bloomsbury, 567 pp., £25, January 2000, 0 7475 4599 5
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Quoting Caravaggio: Contemporary Art, Preposterous History 
by Mieke Bal.
Chicago, 305 pp., £28.50, October 1999, 0 226 03556 5
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Doubting Thomas: A Novel About Caravaggio 
by Atle Naess, translated by Anne Born.
Owen, 159 pp., £14.95, June 2000, 0 7206 1082 6
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Caravaggio: A Life 
by Helen Langdon.
Pimlico, 447 pp., £15, November 1999, 9780712665827
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... John in the Cathedral of Valletta contains his last and greatest masterpiece), but it owed most to Roberto Longhi, the most influential Italian art historian and critic of the 20th century. Longhi provided a convincing account of the artist’s Lombard antecedents and his development as a painter, but, more ...

The Force of the Anomaly

Perry Anderson: Carlo Ginzburg, 26 April 2012

Threads and Traces: True False Fictive 
by Carlo Ginzburg, translated by Anne Tedeschi and John Tedeschi.
California, 328 pp., £20.95, January 2012, 978 0 520 25961 4
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... Hegel, Heine, Baudelaire, Semper, Scott, Riegl, Feyerabend, Simone Weil and Adorno, ending with Roberto Longhi. In another, from Viktor Shklovsky through Tolstoy, Marcus Aurelius and popular riddles of Roman times, Antonio de Guevara and the transmission of medieval tales to the age of Charles V, Montaigne, La Bruyère, Madame de ...

Damn all

Scott Malcomson, 23 September 1993

Culture of Complaint: The Fraying of America 
by Robert Hughes.
Oxford, 224 pp., £12.95, June 1993, 0 19 507676 1
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... stature as a painter is only now being recognised’. Not until 1951, he notes elsewhere, did Roberto Longhi mount ‘the crucial show that brought Caravaggio out of three centuries of neglect and obloquy’. Vermeer ‘was forgotten after his death’. Guido Reni, by contrast, received two centuries’ worth of posthumous esteem only to be slapped ...

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